ONLINE EXTRA — SAUSAGE: Italian Lentil Soup . . . Sausage, Beer and Potato Stew . . . Lasagna Loaf, etc.
By: Herald Staff Reports,
Italian Lentil Soup
1 pound Italian sausage
3 strips bacon, diced
3 or 4 garlic cloves, minced
½ cup chopped onion
½ cup diced celery
½ cup diced carrots
6 cups chicken or beef stock, divided
1 pound dried lentils, rinsed and picked over
2 14½-ounce) cans diced tomatoes
Salt, pepper and red pepper flakes to taste
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon dried basil
½ cup diced zucchini
1 bunch Italian parsley, snipped
Grated Parmesan cheese and balsamic vinegar to finish
Place the sausages in a small saucepan with water to cover and bring to a boil. Cook until sausages are no longer pink, about 10 minutes. Drain. Pierce casings to so fat drains off. Rinse and slice into ½-inch coins.
Meanwhile, saute bacon until crisp in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Drain off fat and add garlic, celery, onions and carrots. Cook, stirring, until vegetables are soft. Add 1 cup of the stock and deglaze the pan. Add the lentils, remaining stock, tomatoes, salt, pepper and red pepper. Stir in the bay leaves and basil. Bring to boil, reduce heat to a low simmer and cook, covered, for about 1 hour. Check from time to time and add water if necessary. Just before serving, stir in zucchini and parsley, and cook 2 minutes. Serve with balsamic vinegar, grated cheese and extra red pepper on the side.
Yield: Serves 8.
Approximate nutritional analysis per serving: 387 calories, 20 percent from fat, 8.5 grams fat (2.4 grams saturated, 1.7 grams monounsaturated), 52.8 milligrams cholesterol, 30.7 grams protein, 46.6 grams carbohydrates, 14.5 grams fiber, 777 milligrams sodium.
Sausage, Beer and Potato Stew
¾ pound low fat, mild turkey sausage
¾ pound sweet potato, (about 3 cups cubed)
½ medium onion, sliced (1 cup)
1 medium green pepper sliced, (1 cup)
1 granny smith apple, sliced (1½ cups)
2 large tomatoes, sliced (3 cups)
12 ounces beer
1 teaspoon dried thyme
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 slices multigrain bread or 2 rolls
Preheat oven to 350 degrees for bread. Cut sausages into 2-inch pieces.
Peel sweet potato and cut into 1-inch pieces. Saute sausage, potato, onion and green pepper in 3-quart nonstick saucepan over medium-high heat for 5 minutes. Add the apple, tomatoes, beer and thyme. Bring to simmer, cover with a lid, and simmer, gently 15 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.
While stew simmers, place bread in oven to warm.
Yield: Serves 2.
Approximate nutritional analysis per serving: 694 calories, 21 percent of calories from fat, 15.9 grams fat (3.8 grams saturated, 4.8 grams monounsaturated), 126 milligrams cholesterol, 42.9 grams protein, 85.5 grams carbohydrates, 15.1 grams fiber, 1,236 milligrams sodium.
2 links hot, lean, turkey Italian sausage, casings removed
1 cup low-fat ricotta cheese
2 tablespoons pesto, optional
1 cup shredded Italian-blend cheese, divided
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tablespoon dried Italian seasoning
1¾ cups favorite pasta sauce, divided
6 no-boil lasagna noodles
10 ounces frozen chopped spinach, thawed, squeezed dry
2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
In a large skillet, brown the sausage, breaking it up as you cook. Remove the sausage from the skillet to a paper towel-lined plate. In a medium bowl, mix the ricotta cheese, pesto if using, ¼ cup Italian-blend cheese, egg and Italian seasoning.
In an 8-inch-by-4-inch loaf pan, spread ¼ to 1/3 cup of the pasta sauce on the bottom. Spread ¼ cup of the ricotta mixture on one noodle and place it in the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle some of the spinach and cooked sausage on top, then spoon on a few tablespoons of the pasta sauce. Top with a few tablespoons of the Italian-blend cheese. Repeat the layering, reserving a good ¼ cup pasta sauce and cheese for the final top layer.
Press down slightly. Spread the remaining pasta sauce on top of the last noodle, sprinkle with remaining cheese and the Parmesan.
Cover with foil and bake the loaf about 35 minutes. Uncover and bake another 10 minutes making sure the noodles are fully cooked. Remove from the oven and let rest 10 minutes before slicing.
Yield: Serves 3.
1 pound ground beef
4 ounces chorizo or other pork sausage, sliced
½ cup chopped onion
1 10-ounce can condensed tomato soup
1 cup corn kernels (canned or frozen)
1/3 cup pitted ripe olives
1 to 2 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoon chopped jalapeno pepper
Generous dash crushed red pepper
1 cup cornmeal
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
Cook beef, sausage and onion until beef is browned, stirring to crumble. Pour off fat. Add soup, 1/2 cup water, corn, olives, chili powder, jalapeno pepper and red pepper. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, bring 3 cups water to a boil in a saucepan. In a bowl, combine cornmeal, salt and 1 cup cold water; pour into boiling water, stirring constantly. Cook 5 minutes. Pour hot meat mixture into shallow 2-quart baking dish. Spread cornmeal mixture on top. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Sprinkle with cheese and bake 15 minutes more. Remove from oven and pour off any fat before serving.
Yield: Serves 6.
Approximate nutritional analysis per serving: 501 calories, 50 percent of calories from fat, 27.8 grams fat (12.1 grams saturated, 11.6 grams monounsaturated), 88.6 milligrams cholesterol, 26 grams protein, 36 grams carbohydrates, 2.5 grams fiber, 1,009 milligrams sodium.
2 tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic, peeled, minced
1 medium onion, peeled, diced
½ cup all-purpose flour
1½ teaspoons Cajun seasoning or to taste, divided
1 pound boneless chicken breast, cut into bite-size chunks
1 8-ounce box Zatarain’s Jambalaya mix
1 8-ounce box Zatarain’s Black Beans and Rice
1 pound smoked kielbasa sausage, cut into bite-size chunks
½ pound cooked, deveined tailless shrimp, cut into in bite-size pieces and sprinkled with Cajun seasoning
1 cup sliced okra (optional)
Tiger sauce (optional)
In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and saute about 1 minute. Add the onion and saute about 3 minutes. In a bowl, mix the flour and ¾ teaspoon Cajun seasoning. Dredge the chicken pieces in flour/seasoning mix and add them to the pot. Cook until the chicken is lightly browned and fully cooked and the onions are translucent. Sprinkle with remaining ¾ teaspoon of the Cajun seasoning.
Following the directions on boxes of Zatarain’s Jambalaya and Black Beans and Rice, prepare both in the same pot with browned chicken according to package directions. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer for approximately 10 to 15 minutes until slightly thickened. Add kielbasa, shrimp and, if using, the okra. Continue to simmer until desired consistency and completely heated through. Serve with a drizzle of Tiger Sauce, if desired.
Grilled Sausage and Caramelized Onion Pizza
2 fresh, hot Italian sausages
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 Spanish onion, halved and thinly sliced
1 14-ounce baked pizza crust (such as Boboli)
1 cup diced fontina cheese
Build a charcoal fire and let the briquets ash over or heat a gas grill to medium. Grill sausages until cooked through, about 15 minutes. Cut into ¼-inch slices and set aside.
Heat oven to 450 degrees.
Heat olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add the onions and let them cook, undisturbed, for 3 to 5 minutes, then stir. They should begin to caramelize. Continue to cook, undisturbed for another 3 to 5 minutes, and stir again. Repeat until the onions are an even dark golden brown. Set aside on a plate to cool.
Place pizza crust on a large baking sheet. Build your pizza starting with the sausage, then the onions, finishing with the cheese. Bake until crust is crisp and cheese is bubbly, about 15 minutes. Cool in pan 5 minutes then cut into wedges.
Yield: Serves 4.
Approximate nutritional analysis per serving: 503 calories, 39 percent of calories from fat, 21.7 grams fat (9.3 grams saturated, 6.8 grams monounsaturated), 51 milligrams cholesterol, 24.6 grams protein, 52 grams carbohydrates, 2 grams fiber, 1,032 milligrams sodium.
Stuffed Banana Peppers
8 banana peppers, or more if peppers are small
2 tablespoons butter
½ cup chopped onion
½ cup chopped celery
1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
1 8-ounce can tomato sauce
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
2½ teaspoons salt, divided
½ teaspoon ground black pepper, divided
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 pound hot Italian sausage
1 pound mild Italian sausage
1½ cups bread crumbs
Cut off tops of peppers and remove ribs and seeds. Chop edible portions of tops; set aside. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add peppers, reduce heat, and simmer until tender but still firm, about 5 minutes. Drain and set aside.
Heat butter in a medium skillet. Saute reserved chopped pepper, onion and celery until tender, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce and garlic. Season with basil, oregano, 1½ teaspoons of salt and ¼ teaspoon of pepper. Simmer uncovered for 10 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl, combine egg, 1 teaspoon of salt, ¼ teaspoon of pepper, Worcestershire sauce and Parmesan cheese. Mix in hot sausage, mild sausage, bread crumbs and 1 cup of the tomato sauce mixture. Using a piping bag or sausage stuffer, fill each pepper with the meat mixture. Place in a 3-quart casserole dish, and pour remaining tomato sauce mixture over peppers. Bake uncovered in preheated oven for 1 hour.
Yield: Serves 8.
Note: Peppers can be sliced down one side and filled using a spoon for ease. Bake peppers cut side up. Peppers can be sprinkled with additional Parmesan or shredded mozzarella cheese for the last 15 minutes of baking.
Beans and Rice with Andouille
2 tablespoons canola oil
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1¼ cups long-grain rice
1 15-ounce can chicken broth
1 teaspoon thyme
1 12-ounce package andouille or Polish sausage links, sliced
1 16-ounce can seasoned black or chili beans
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
3 tablespoons chopped cilantro or parsley
Heat oil in large heavy saucepan over medium-high heat; add garlic and onion. Cook, stirring, 2 minutes. Add rice; cook, stirring, until rice is lightly colored, 2 minutes. Pour chicken broth into large measuring cup; add enough water to measure 2½ cups. Pour into rice mixture; stir in thyme. Heat to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer; simmer until rice is tender, about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium heat; add sausage. (Add a little oil, if needed.) Cook until browned on one side, about 2 minutes. Add beans, salt, pepper and red pepper. Cook until hot, 2 minutes. Keep warm. Place rice in large serving bowl; top with sausage and beans. Sprinkle with cilantro.
Yield: Serves 6.
Approximate nutritional analysis per serving: 386 calories, 36 percent of calories from fat, 16 grams fat (5 grams saturated), 32 milligrams cholesterol, 49 grams carbohydrates, 17 grams protein, 1,135 milligrams sodium, 5 grams fiber.
FOR THE ROUX:
1 cup vegetable oil
1¼ cups flour
FOR THE SHRIMP STOCK:
1 pound shrimp, with heads and shells
2 quarts water
½ teaspoon crab boil seasonings
FOR THE GUMBO:
½ pound Louisiana hot sausage
½ pound smoked sausage, such as Andouille
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
½ pound beef stew meat, cut into ½-inch pieces
4 chicken wings, separated into drumettes and wing tips
3 chicken necks
1 slice raw ham, cut into ½-inch pieces (see note)
4 chicken gizzards, chopped
2 to 3 quarts water, divided
1 cup chopped onion
¼ cup chopped garlic
3 bay leaves
½ green bell pepper, chopped
3 green onions, chopped
3 crabs, cooked, cleaned and broken in quarters
1 dozen oysters, with their liquid
3 teaspoons dried thyme
¼ cup chopped parsley, or more, to your liking
Kosher salt, to taste
Fresh cracked pepper, to taste
Gumbo file, to taste (see note)
To make the roux: In a heavy-bottomed skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Once the oil is hot but not smoking, add flour all at once, turn the heat down to medium-low, and stir constantly with a wire whisk until roux is several shades darker than peanut butter. (Experiment here. If you prefer more intense flavor from very dark, expect to cook it for more than an hour.)
If necessary, reduce the heat as you’re cooking to prevent the roux from burning. (If it burns, discard the entire mixture and start over.) Set aside to cool.
To make the shrimp stock: Shell and devein the shrimp, reserving the heads and shells.
Place the heads and shells in a pot with 2 quarts water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Let the stock simmer for 45 minutes; occasionally skim off the impurities.
Strain the stock through cheesecloth into a clean bowl; discard the shrimp heads and shells. Add crab boil seasonings to shrimp stock and set aside.
To make the gumbo: If the sausages aren’t fully cooked, poke them with a fork, then place them in a heavy-bottomed saute pan over medium heat. Cook thoroughly, turning them occasionally and adding a little water as necessary to prevent burning. Let cool and slice into ½-inch-thick pieces. Set aside.
Pat dry the stew meat, chicken wings and necks. Add oil to an 8-quart stockpot over high heat; once the oil is hot, add the stew meat, chicken wings and necks. Brown the beef and chicken, stirring occasionally to prevent them from scorching.
Turn the heat down to medium-high and add raw ham, gizzards and sausage. Add 1 quart water. When the mixture starts to simmer, turn the heat to low. Let simmer 30 minutes.
Add onion, garlic, bay leaves, green bell pepper and green onions. Stir in shrimp stock, 1 quart water and ½ to ¾ cup of roux, depending on desired thickness.
Let simmer 20 minutes, then add crabs, shrimp, oysters and their liquid, plus additional water (if the gumbo is too thick). Bring back to a simmer, then cook for 10 more minutes.
During the last simmer, stir in thyme and parsley, then season to taste with salt and pepper. Stir in file powder. (Start with a little then add more to desired thickness.)
The gumbo should be thin or slightly thickened. Adjust the balance of water, roux and file powder to achieve the desired thickness.
Taste again and adjust seasonings as necessary. Serve with white rice. (The gumbo tastes better after sitting overnight.)
Notes: Raw ham is dry-cured ham that’s sold in thin slices, such as prosciutto; gumbo file is powdered sassafras leaves. The file adds flavor and acts as a thickener.
Yield: About 6 quarts
FOR THE SOUP:
2 large (about 13 ounces) cooked chorizo sausages, sliced (optional)
1 to 1½ cups French green lentils, picked over and rinsed (see note)
1 tablespoon olive oil
½ large onion, chopped
2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 14.5-ounce no salt added cans diced tomatoes with their juice
8 small red waxy potatoes, scrubbed, quartered and soaked in 3 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon paprika
½ teaspoon cumin seed, lightly crushed
½ teaspoon ground coriander
3 cups chopped greens, such as kale or Swiss chard (tough stems discarded)
FOR THE GARNISHES:
Good-quality olive oil
Grated hard cheese
If using the chorizo, brown the slices in a heavy-bottomed pan over medium-high heat. Drain on a plate lined with paper towels. Set aside.
Place lentils in a large, heavy-bottomed soup pot. (Use 1 cup lentils if adding chorizo, or 1½ cups lentils for a vegan soup.) Add water to cover by about 2 inches. Bring to a boil, then lower heat to a simmer. Cook lentils until tender, at least 30 minutes. (If necessary, add water while cooking.) Drain, then transfer lentils to a bowl and set aside.
Return the pot to the stove over medium-high heat. Add olive oil. Once the oil is hot, add onion and carrots and saute, stirring occasionally, until onion is translucent. Add garlic and stir for 30 seconds. Add diced tomatoes with their juice and potatoes with their soaking water.
Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce heat. Add chorizo slices, if using. Let simmer, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are just tender, about 12 minutes.
Stir together salt, freshly ground black pepper, paprika, cumin seed and coriander in a small bowl. Set aside.
One the potatoes are cooked, stir in the lentils and chopped greens. Add spice mixture to taste. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, just until greens are cooked. Add more spices as necessary.
Divide the soup among bowls and serve it with desired garnishes: a drizzle of olive oil, a sprinkle of parsley or shavings of hard cheese all work well.
Yield: Serves 4 to 6.
Chicken and Andouille Jambalaya
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
½ pound chopped andouille sausage
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts or 3 boneless, skinless thighs (about 1 pound total), cut into 2-inch pieces
1 tablespoon homemade or purchased Creole seasoning (see note)
1 Vidalia onion, chopped
1 rib celery, chopped
½ green bell pepper, cored, seeded and chopped
1 garlic clove, very finely chopped
1½ cups long-grain rice
1 4-ounce can tomato sauce
2½ cups homemade chicken stock or reduced-sodium broth
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
In a large, ovenproof skillet, heat the oil and butter over high heat until shimmering. Add the sausage and cook until it starts to brown, about 3 minutes. Add the chicken and sprinkle the Creole seasoning over all. Continue cooking over high heat until the chicken just begins to color, about 3 minutes. Remove the meat to a plate.
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Add the onion, celery, and bell pepper to the skillet and cook until they start to color, 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, 45 to 60 seconds. Add the rice and stir to coat. Stir in the tomato sauce and stock and bring to a boil.
Return the chicken and sausage to the skillet and stir to combine. Transfer to the oven and bake, uncovered, stirring once, until the rice is tender, 20 to 30 minutes. Let the jambalaya cool slightly and adjust seasoning to taste before serving.
Note: To make ¼ cup Creole seasoning, combine 4 teaspoons cayenne, 1 tablespoon each coarse salt and white pepper, 2¼ teaspoons each dried thyme and freshly ground black pepper, ½ teaspoon dried sage and ¼ teaspoon each onion powder and garlic powder. Store in a cool, dry place for up to 3 months.
Yield: Serves 6.
Approximate nutritional analysis per serving: 400 calories, (30 percent of calories from fat, 13.2 grams fat (4.3 grams saturated, 5.7 grams monounsaturated), 48.3 milligrams cholesterol, 22 grams protein, 46.9 grams carbohydrates, 2.3 grams fiber, 769.7 milligrams sodium.